In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 30, 2005 / 25 Av, 5765

A Bitter Client

By Marty Nemko

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | A client just left my office. I have to tell you about the session.

Robert, 28 years old, came into my office wondering if he should change careers. Although he had graduated with a degree in art, he took a well-paying job as a programmer. The obvious inference was that he was unhappy about having sold out his artistic self for a buck, but after some questioning, it became clear that something else was causing his malaise.

Sprinkled through his answers was anger at nearly everyone and everything: salesmen, even occasional repetitive or stressful tasks, capitalism, immigrants ripping off the taxpayers, unintelligent people, etc.

Also sprinkled throughout the session were admissions that he is insecure: insecure about his ability to make a career change, to make friends, to save money, to keep his girlfriend from leaving him.

Near the end of the session, I decided to take a risk. I said, "I'm wondering if your malaise might have little to do with your career. After all, you're making a good income, say you're good at what you do, and on probing, admit that you enjoy most of what you do there. You've said that you're insecure about a number of things. Could it be that your malaise comes from deflecting your insecurity by lashing out at everyone and everything?" His eyes welled up.

He said that he had been that way since early childhood, and that his mother was an angry person. I explained: "Your mom bestowed on you a double whammy: She transmitted her genes for anger plus, as a role model, conveyed that anger was an appropriate way to respond to the world."

I said, "If you are willing to try to replace your anger with gratitude, everything will improve: your satisfaction with work, your relationships, your drinking habits, everything. He said, "But it's so ingrained. Can I change?"

I said, "You're right. It's tough to transcend your genetics and early upbringing, but if you do what I recommend, your chances are good. For the past 28 years, you have gotten in the habit of, whenever seeing something or someone suboptimal, reacting with judgment and anger. At this point, such responses have probably become neural pathways. Starting this minute, and continuing for the next week, I want you to do this: Every time you start to feel anger about someone or something, consciously replace that feeling with empathy and even love. If you force yourself to try to do this 100 percent of the time, without exception, for the next week, you will, almost instantly become a happier, more successful person.

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I continued, "Your natural tendency will be to quickly forget about your new you and revert to your old self. To prevent that, you must do these things:

  • Write the letter L (for love) on your palm. Seeing it 24/7 will help you remember your new you.

  • Every time you put something in your mouth, think love. Because you drink and eat so many times a day, linking that with your desired new behavior (empathy) will help you remember to be your new self.

  • Keep a memo pad with you at all times. Every time you're in a situation that previously would have made you angry, write down how you reacted to it.

  • Hang out with more loving people. You said you want to make new friends. Make a loving personality the litmus test for anyone you're considering as a friend. I didn't say the following but wish I had. I'll say it next session: "And to increase the likelihood of finding such people, consider volunteering at a place that might attract them, for example, an animal shelter, a hospital, a center that serves low-income people, perhaps even the illegal immigrants you resent."

I asked, "Do you want to try this?" Tearfully, resolutely, he nodded.

I concluded by saying, "Robert, I'm hoping those tears are not just of sadness but of hope. You've been unhappy for 28 years. I'm willing to bet that you will derive more pleasure in the next year than in your previous 28 put together. Let's get together next week and we'll use the notes in your memo pad as a springboard for the session."

He nodded optimistically.

I'm eager to see how his week turns out.

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400+ of Dr. Nemko's published writings are on www.martynemko.com. Comment by clicking here.


© 2005, Dr. Marty Nemko